Update: Bumping this to the top of the articles list as it happens live.
Update 2: And now the attempt has been scrubbed for the day. Felix was ready to go, but winds picked up at the last minute and mission control decided to pull the plug. They’ll attempt to give it a go tomorrow, although weather forecasts aren’t promising for then either. It may be a few days before Felix can make another attempt.
Austrian sky diver Felix Baumgartner is hoping to make his historic jump this morning, provided the weather cooperates. You may recall that Baumgartner is attempting to make the highest and fastest dive in history when he leaps from a small capsule, carried aloft by a helium filled balloon, from 23 miles above the surface of the planet. That’s pretty much right on the edge of space and three times higher than the altitude that commercial jets fly. On the descent, Felix will free fall for as much as five minutes and is expected to reach speeds in excess of 690 mph (1110 km/h), becoming the first person to break the sound barrier without a vehicle. After that, he’ll pull his ripcord and slowly drift back to Earth, taking somewhere between 15-20 minutes to complete the entire dive.
The jump was scheduled to take place yesterday but cold weather moved into the New Mexico launch site, delaying lift off until today. As I write this, they are in yet another weather delay, but Felix and his team are hoping that things will warm up later this morning and they’ll be able to get underway. You can watch the entire event live in the streaming YouTube video below. It should be an amazing site to see when it actually does happen.
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